Two months ago, we sold our house, put all we own into storage, and set out on an adventure as a family.
We’re traveling the country, making new friends, visiting old ones, starting churches, and building a lot of memories along the way. As we go, we’re observing how God is moving in different parts of the country and keeping our eyes open for the next place to relocate.
We just crossed mile 5,964…
We’re learning to depend on God and each other more. We’ve seen God provide surprisingly well many times, whether it’s housing, a strategic ministry opportunity, rest time, or just good places to get away and have fun together. As I oscillate between watching the highway ahead and glancing in the rearview mirror, I have smiled many times watching my kids maturing together and learning to function like a “pack”, counting on each other for friendship and support in new places.
We’re learning much on our journey…
- How to homeschool our kids on the road.
- Perspective: Discovering beautiful strengths and areas of needed growth for the Church of North America.
- Trusting God for everything again – direction, provision, and peace while on a long journey.
- To include our kids in seeking God
- Living on the edge with God flows harmoniously with raising a strong family.
We all need direction from God. When we seek Him, He often answers directly. Sometimes He leads us on a journey, an adventure. He’s the God of the process as much as the destination.
Where are you seeking God for direction? Be prayerful, be wise, be courageous, and be willing to take risks as you trust Him. That’s the adventure of living by faith. And God promises that our faith pleases God and has great rewards (Hebrews 11:6)
Be encouraged this week as you continue your own journey of following Jesus in the great adventure of life.
If you want to read further, below are a few highlight of our travels so far, with insights we’re learning along the way.
In Clarksville, we trained a group of combat veterans from Reboot Combat Recovery to plant simple churches on installations and in their city. We learned a lot from these servicemen and women about self-sacrifice, leadership, and courage. It was fun!
In Atlanta, we trained a new group of church planters to make disciples on HBCU campuses. We were deeply impacted by our friends, Corey and Jade Lee, who moved to the 2nd most crime ridden neighborhood in Atlanta to make disciples and start transforming the neighborhood from the inside out.
We met new friends, the Healds, in Chattanooga. We were all a bit tired after Atlanta, and starting to experience the first “culture shocks” of leaving home. The Healds unexpectedly brought us to their mountain retreat on Lookout Mountain. It was the perfect place to let the kids run around, swim, ride horses and be refreshed after spending a week on the floor of a home in the ghetto of Atlanta.
We watched hang gliders — I TOTALLY want to do this! ( I guess I’ll wait until the kids are out of the house.) We left Chattanooga thankful to God for the rest He gives and great new friends.
Miraculous provision of housing continued to be part of this leg of our journey. We had a week before we needed to be in our next city. We all prayed as a family while in Chattanooga. We agreed that we wanted to go to Charleston to the beach. We’d never been there before. We had no reason to go. It just seemed good…
OK, here’s the cool part. Wait for it…
While on the way, a random person calls me who lives in Charleston. He was researching CPM’s (Church Planting Movements) on college campuses and wanted to interview me. When he found out we were going to be in his city the next day, he set us up with housing. Again, we were thankful for miraculous provision and new friends. And we had a great time on the beach.
At the White House. We gave homeschooling lessons to the kids on history and government in Washington D.C.
More Homeschooling lessons on the Civil War at Gettysburg, PA. We were impressed with Gettysburg and highly recommend visiting if you get the chance.
Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
We launched a church planting initiative at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY with friends, Stan and Allison.
On the campus of Cornell University
We stayed at a Lakehouse outside Ithaca and caught some nice fish.
We hiked to waterfalls. Ithaca is one of the prettiest places I’ve seen in the country.
Students gather as a simple church in a dorm at Cornell. Here, they celebrate communion during worship with a cucumber. That’s another story (but a good one).
We laid out a map of the Cornell campus and taught students using the analogy of a chess board. Like, different chess pieces, Jesus is sending students to make disciples and plant simple churches throughout the campus.
We stayed a few days at the Hub outside Pittsburgh. Many of you helped us launch this SCPX mission base with our friends 18 months ago. It was great to be reunited to nurture disciple making and simple church planting in the region.
New friends, Joseph and Renee found out we were driving from Pittsburgh and asked us to detour to Cleveland for a few days. We spoke to 30-40 house church planters connected with NEO House church network. They have a vision to give 50% of their church network income to sending overseas missionaries. I was encouraged and impressed by what God is doing in Cleveland and glad to be connected with it. While there, I filmed some training videos to further university church planting in NE Ohio.
View from our house in Cleveland, on the shores of Lake Erie. We stayed with new medical doctor friends who do medical missions and help plant house churches in SE Asia. You can see Cleveland skyline in the background. The NEO network surprised our kids with a box of new toys and dolls. What a surprise and blessing. I really liked Cleveland.
While in Indianapolis, we spent some fun time with our friends Bernie and Julie and visited the discipleship groups at his company. Bernie started a couple discipleship groups last year at his company that are still going strong. It’s very encouraging to see God raising up men and women who follow Jesus in the marketplace.
I had a great time seeing people encounter Jesus in a bar with Daron Earlewine at Pub Theology in Indianapolis. What a radical thought – Jesus showing up at a party? It seems ironically counter to “evangelicalism”, but quite clearly Biblical. Our whole family had a great time staying with the Earlewine’s and growing our friendship. I also got some much needed web development work done in Indy.
Leg Two of our Journey to be continued….
We’re back in KC for some R and R, getting ready to head toward the West Coast.